Karen Adler, Author . Harvard Common $32.95 (416p) ISBN 978-1-55832-296-7 ISBN 978-1-55832-297-4

Social observer Malcolm Gladwell has noted that when people attempt to select a single item from an extreme number of choices, many people will suffer information overload and do nothing at all. That's unhappy news for this cookbook. Where to begin in the face of more than 30 chicken recipes, 65 rubs and sauces and 50 beef options, not to mention chapters on fish, pork, lamb and vegetables? Nonetheless, Kansas BBQ experts Adler and Fertig do a pretty good job of seeing readers through. Marketed toward women and prefaced with the proclamation "We grill and smoke like girls," the book doesn't strongly differ from works by the Queens' male contemporaries. The royal leitmotif, with an abundance of illustrations of the authors in tiaras and a two-page spread on how to wave like a queen, is corny, but Adler and Fertig compensate with insights on the often overlooked technique of planking (soaking a hardwood plank in water and then grilling on it) and a comprehensive chart on fish texture and flavors. Skimming works best in a tome of this size, especially when dishes for varying courses appear within the same chapter, and side dishes are scattered everywhere. Still, dogged browsers will find such treats as Blue Cheese Coleslaw, and Barbecued Corned Beef with Mustard-Beer Slather. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 02/28/2005
Release date: 03/01/2005
Paperback - 463 pages - 978-1-55832-297-4
Open Ebook - 480 pages - 978-1-55832-578-4
Paperback - 978-1-55832-319-3
Hardcover - 673 pages - 978-1-4587-5626-8
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